My Notes on The Magical Carousel by Patrizia Norelli-Bachelet, chapter ten, Capricorn.1
The Universal Mother
Conquest and Crystallization in Matter
The children arrive in Capricorn to a majestic vision of a mountain that reaches up to the sky. It has the appearance of an actual living, breathing person, “a very ancient and wise person.” After the Centaur takes his exit, the children are left alone to confront the enormous challenge of what to do next, which is obvious because there is only one way to go and that’s up. But ascending the mountain looks like an impossibility. They do what is necessary and begin by putting one foot in front of the other. The climb is so steep that it doesn’t take long before they need to pause and regroup. Catching their breath and letting their sore and tired legs rest they look down on the valley below to review from whence they came… it’s a crisp bright day and they can see a body of water on the horizon even though their journey has just begun, and they’ve not ascended far up the mountain at all.
Something splashes in the water, climbs ashore, and makes its way towards them. It arrives at the proper time after a steady pace, also climbing the mountain, but with vigor, and strength. By the time they come face to face a “very strange animal” greets the children and inquires if they are having any difficulty. He is a strange animal on account that he is “a Goat with the tail of a Fish.” The children are mesmerized by this creature who “looks at them in a quiet penetrating silence.” There is also this “profound and somewhat melancholic regard and the strength emanating from him, though his body is rather frail.”
They respond to the Goat-Fish’s inquiry by telling him their story. He listens with rapt attention and then summarily explains that the children are welcomed to join him since the way forward is too difficult for small people, that he knows the path well since it is his own, and that he is willing to share the burden of climbing together. He also gives the children some assurance that they will reach their destination no matter how long it takes. So they begin, mounting the Goat-Fish, but before long the climb proves as difficult as anyone could imagine. The Goat-Fish stumbles, and trips on rocks and crevices, determinedly, and brooks no obstacle to make progress. More impressive, the enormous effort expended is made without complaint. Knocked to his knees repeatedly, but each time he rises and collects himself, and continues. Not so much sharing the burdens of others but taking on their burdens as his own responsibility. When they finally reach their destination, it is something of a surprise because it is nowhere near the top of the mountain, only the halfway mark. The Goat-Fish places them down in front of a door with a symbol and the number 10 on it. It is December 21st, the day Capricorn begins. The Goat-Fish explains why he asks the children to disembark from their vehicle here at the halfway point as opposed to continuing in the same manner that has gotten them this far; “Oh, you cannot reach it by the outside. It is only through the inside that you may come to the peak, and this you must do alone.”
The key that opens the large wooden door is much larger than any previous key and requires more than one person to insert and turn in the keyhole. Similarly, the massive door requires tremendous effort to swing open before the children can enter the mountain.
There is the sense of entering an ancient crypt, a damp and musty earthiness surrounds the children. The passageway is dark and narrow and although they are “alone” an “indescribable force” carries them forward. Their movement is compelled by this force to make progress even though a part of themselves remains apprehensive. Time passes, and the force continues its work until the children enter an area where a soft glow induces an apparition of some sort to enrapt the children’s attention or is it a “real” vision? In front of them is an old woman donned in a long flowing robe, and her face hidden inside the deep dark well of her hood. She sits beneath an olive tree in a sorrowful state of grief. Weeping, her hand comes to her face. There is no telling what she looks like. Her weeping feels powerfully contagious, but in a way that invites sympathy and without pinning the melancholy on any cause. Strangely they are drawn to this state in a sympathetic sense of rapport and enjoying the experience of joining in the release of emotion. But this first image fades, and the movement is ever higher, and onward. Soon after the first apparition fades and with it the light, another apparition appears. It is the same hooded woman from the previous experience who is keeping someone from being seen, hidden within her robes. There is a sense of desperation in the children to uncover the hidden person, to discover the identity, but as soon as this intention imposes itself on the scene the vision evaporates.
Each apparition appears then fades as if to signal that there is more to see than THIS and so the journey continues higher. The force carries them through the darkness until another vision “comes to light.” The next vision puts an enormous table on display with every imaginable food possible on it and the robed lady is seated gorging herself “grotesquely” grabbing whatever is within reach and stuffing herself, items disappearing into the hood that hides her face. The children tempted to join in on the feast, their appetites whetted and ravenous, but then this image too disappears “leaving them to continue their magical ascent in the darkness.”
The visions keep coming. In the next, the robed lady is seen walking through a human tunnel, admirers linking hands high mimicking an “A” framed corridor through which she passes. The people want to touch her “as she walks in total isolation through the multitude, oblivious of their needs.” This vision fades and is followed instantly by another where the robed woman is seated on a throne. People gather and bow at her feet. She is presented with gold and splendor, treasures galore. However, “as grand as these offerings are they never seem to be enough, for she always demands more and is never satisfied.” Visions begin to proliferate and sequence faster and faster, cycling through to the point of luring the children, tempting them to become enmeshed in the scenes. But as soon as this feeling overwhelms them the vision fades. Each experience moves them to realize something about the most intimate parts of themselves, as they climb the inside of the mountain, and the light loses its darkness the higher they go. Soon they’ll be near the summit just as the Goat-Fish promised. Each scene increasingly comes to life, with a force of their own “that carries them higher” and soon the time elapsed between episodes shrinks to almost zero.
They become completely despondent when suddenly they hear an unrelenting tick through an immensity of silence. The ticking gets louder as if it grows nearer, but still unseen. The children are catapulted into action, to find the source of the tick but their running in a circle merely exhausts them into a heap on the floor. Just as suddenly as they heard the tick, and after lying completely still for a long while, the children noticed a large hole in the center of the room.
When the old man asks the children who they are, they respond as anyone might, by telling their names. But this answer doesn’t satisfy the old man because as he says, “That’s not your identity.” Perplexed, the children turn over their “credentials” they had won in Sagittarius. The old man studies them but conceals how impressed he is. “Having been given these you should be able to tell me who you are.”
He opens an enormous book and begins leafing through its pages looking for an entry on the children. The pages are worn yellow; it’s an ancient book. There are innumerable sheets, and it takes an exceptionally long time until he finally finds what he’s looking for: “VAL… BORN ON PLANET EARTH IN THE YEAR…” He reads her history going back to times she was not aware of and then turns toward times that have yet to come. Each account is detailed, and all the major events are noted. A similar reading is done for Pom-pom. The whole time the clock ticks away but without any movement of the missing hands, there is no indication of any advance in time.
When the retrospective and prophetic issues are all laid bare, the old man begins to share information about their present state. “Their most intimate details of their character and essence, many of which they had come to understand through the magical visions of the mountain.” When he completes the reading, he turns again to the children and asks, “Now do you know who you are and what your duty is?” The children respond affirmatively, “they agree to their true identity.”
To this the old man pulls two globes from his robe and presents them to the children. When they look closer, they see the same symbols on the clock within the globe, A circle with a minus sign to the left and a positive sign to the right. The old man bids them farewell and wishes them luck on their journey through the remaining realms. He suggests they take the globes with them and then let’s them know there is one more vision ahead, something very few people get to see. It is the place of Omanisol. He disappears in a cloud of green smoke, and the children make their way up a ladder of what seems like infinite rungs. By the 99th rung they step out onto the peak of the mountain.
Omanisol wears flowing robes that blend with the earthy colors of the mountain, as if she is growing from the mountain itself. She is “immobile and breathing ever so slightly, in a manner which makes one feel the physical life in her is suspended. Her face is not old, but rather ancient, and her half-closed eyes reveal an understanding that is of the nature of the mountain over which she presides.”
The rays of the midday sun envelope the peak of the mountain, but the children cannot locate the sun in the sky. The visibility created by the light reveals a land below in all directions, the view is unimaginably vivid and with such clarity it is difficult to describe without seeing it for yourself. From their elevated perch the majesty of it all is what strikes the observer first. As they immerse into the experience of taking it all in “a swell of iridescent, multicolored smoke appears on the far-off horizon. It moves in their direction, coming with great force, always closer toward the commanding peak…” The children want to run, but remain steadfast, supported by Omanisol’s imperturbable stance. But it’s “a tornado, whirling with mighty power. She gives a maternal feeling of protection, and a sort of mother-of -the-spirit, because it seems the state she is in could never be harmed by any outside force, being herself the essence of the rocky mountain.”
The children are picked-up and lifted off the mountain by the powerful force, flying “through the clear radiant sky.”
1 Norelli-Bachelet, P. (2017). The Magical Carousel and Commentaries: A Zodiacal Odyssey (2017th ed.). Notion Press, Inc.